Vegetable cultivation in space lays the foundation for China’s deep-space exploration
27.10.2023 - 10:59
/ Emma Doughty
According to the China Global Television Network, the vegetable cultivation experiment carried out by Chinese astronauts during the Shenzhou-16 mission to the Tiangong space station has yielded a good harvest, verifying the reliability of its plant growth technology in space.
In this video, Yang Runze (a researcher from the China Astronaut Research and Training Center) explains that scientists on the ground have a replica of the space garden, which they use to compare Earth- and space-grown plants. So far, their observations show that growth is basically the same.
The space experiments are verifying the relevant technologies, which are a key part of China’s Environmental Control and Life Support System (ECLSS). As well as providing food, plants can absorb carbon dioxide in the air to generate through photosynthesis, and then regenerate and purify water via transpiration.
In the future, the plan is to focus on rapid and large-scale cultivation for deep space exploration, including crewed missions to land on the Moon and Mars.
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